Pieter Hansen


Pieter Hansen was born in October 1737. He was the son of Albany leader Hans Hansen and his wife, Sara Cuyler Hansen. He grew up in the second ward home of a prominent merchant. His father died in 1756 and he continued to live with his mother until her passing a decade or more later. With her death, Pieter took title to their home by the terms of his father's will.

He was in his mid-forties when he married young Rachel Fonda in 1781. Their only child was born the following year. He was a member of the Albany Dutch church.

Pieter Hansen was a merchant and started out in service positions in the Albany government. He served as constable and firemaster in the second ward.

Although he owned real property in Albany and beyond, he was rarely mentioned as the head of an Albany household.

In 1766, he was among the men who signed a constitution for the Albany Sons of Liberty. Although in his prime during the war years, his absence from Revolutionary records is striking.

In 1788, he was identified as a boarder in a second ward home. His name did not appear on the Albany census in 1790. But in 1794-96, he was named superintendant and city watchman.

Perhaps he was the Peter Hansen mentioned in the Dutch church burial records in September 1801.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Pieter Hansen is CAP biography number 4946. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. We seek more information on his marriage and passing. Could he have been the same Pieter Hansen of Tribe's Hill who lived in the Mohawk Valley at that time?

first posted: 7/25/06